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How can the stiffness of muscles be treated in an infant?

Q: My 5 months old son (one among the twins, born at 35 weeks), is not able to fold his fingers. He is able to bend the joint between the palm and the fingers, but individual finger joints are stiff. The marks on the inner side of the fingers are not visible. X-ray shows that the bones joints are formed, but because of the soft tissues, cartilage are tight, and therefore, he is not able to bend them. But in some fingers, one or more joints are fine like in his right hand's middle finger, the first joint is fine. The ortho-paediatrician suggested mild massage of the fingers, and also said that his muscles are a bit stiff. Also, he is still unable to roll to his stomach frequently. But he tries to pull himself up to sitting position by holding my hands. However, his twin brother is normal. Please advise.

A:Massage of the fingers certainly would not do any harm but if the other muscles are also slightly stiff and there is a significant difference between the activities performed by the two babies, please get him fully evaluated by a developmental paediatrician.

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